CSL, the provider of secure connectivity for machine-to-machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) devices in mission-critical applications, has just published the results of a comprehensive study that highlights how UK retailers are failing to address connectivity concerns and details the ways in which this is having a negative impact upon operational procedures.
The company commissioned Research Without Barriers to question over 300 IT managers, IT directors, chief information officers (CIOs) and chief technology officers (CTOs) in retail companies with over ten employees. The results highlight the vital role connectivity plays in today’s retail environment, with 50% of survey respondents claiming that they couldn’t operate without it.
The survey found that, on average, 71% of retailers are either very or extremely reliant on connectivity for core functions including Point of Sale, stock management, general administration, shopper and/or staff analytics, tagging solutions, surveillance cameras and intruder alarms. Heating, lighting, customer feedback, in-store promotions, HR and finance were also cited by 24% of retailers as functions that are extremely reliant on connectivity.
It emerges that larger retailers with more than 250 employees are somewhat more likely to be reliant on connectivity for shopper and/or data analytics, while those companies with fewer than 250 employees focus on connectivity for Point of Sale and general administration.
Worryingly, the loss of connectivity is relatively commonplace, with 72% of retailers questioned having suffered such an event. Furthermore, 44% of retailers lose connectivity every month – an event that three-quarters of those questioned said had a moderate or high impact on core functions, with Point of Sale (86%), stock management (81%) and general administration (76%) the areas most affected.